Sprint Cars & Drag Cars = Gearhead Heaven!
The promoter of the Trophy Cup, David Pusateri is a good friend. We have coffee every morning with a bunch of other knuckleheads (Uh. . .I mean Gearheads) in Willow Glen. Beyond fixing the world’s problems on a daily basis, we talk racing.
Many years ago when my two sons, brother-in-law and I first started attending the Trophy Cup in Tulare, David suggested to spend the daytime down at Auto Club Famoso Dragstrip in Bakersfield to watch the Drags. This works perfectly because the Drags are held during the day and the Trophy Cup Sprint Car Races are at night. Works for me!
So Here’s the David Pusateri GearHead Tour:
8:00am: Breakfast at Apple Annie’s Coffee Shop
First stop is head to Apple Annie’s for a great country breakfast. Apple Annie’s is located at 1165 N. Blackstone Street right across Hwy 99 from the light at Prosperity Avenue. The restaurant is in the parking lot of the Hampton Inn Tulare. Gotta start the day with an Apple Annie’s breakfast!
9:00am: Head to Famoso Drag Strip
This year, the Hot Rod Reunion Nostalgia Drags are running (Oct 25-27) the week following the Trophy Cup. Dang it! However not all is lost, Bakersfield Famoso is holding a Street Outlaw® type event featuring Pro-Mod cars that run heads-up 1/8 mile (no time) winner moves on and also Pro Street Cars making 1/4 mile 7-second runs and muscle cars running 10’s, 11’s and 12’s. This event is put on by the West Coast Hot Rod Association from 10:00am to 5:00pm on Saturday and 8:00am – 5:00pm on Sunday. Entry fee is $20 per day and all tickets are pit passes, so you have free run of the whole race complex. Auto Club Famoso Raceway Drag Strip is approximately 50 minutes down Highway 99 from Tulare. Take the exit for Hwy 46 Famoso Road east and the track is 4 miles down the road.
West Coast Hot Rods in Action
3:00pm: – Time to head back to Thunderbowl Raceway
At about 3:00 we head back to the Trophy Cup. We park our car and then walk to Vejar’s Mexican Restaurant for a good meal.
After a day walking around the drags, we’re getting kind of hungry. So after we park our car, we walk over to Vejars Mexican Restaurant & Cantina for a hearty meal. Vejar’s Mexican Restaurant is local Tulare landmark. The recipes haven’t changed in over 45 years, which means much of the community has been raised on Vejar’s rice and beans! That’s something to be proud of.
5:00pm – Head to Our Seats to Watch the Trophy Cup
With a full stomach we walk back to Thunderbowl Raceway and head up to our seats to watch an night of awesome Dirt Track Racing. With all due respect to the Drags. . . you just can’t buy the last laps of the Sprint Car Main Event at the Trophy Cup!
Gearhead Heaven: Drag Racing and Sprint Car Racing in One Day!
At the end of the night when you get back to your hotel for the night, you think about the 7 second Pro-Gas drag cars at Bakersfield and then an entire night of incredible Sprint Car Racing. . .you gotta just think WOW! Pretty cool being a Gearhead.
George's love of circle track racing led him to develop:
George drove a Late Model Stock Car for many years. Wasn't any good. Spent way too much money, but had a lot of fun!